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Retail Detail Europe reports that Ahold Delhaize-owned Albert Heijn in the Netherlands is testing out its own Amazon Go-like checkout-free store format.

The unit, located in its Zaandam headquarters, "is filled to the brim with technology … Customers need a debit or credit card to gain access to the store, then they can take all the products they want and walk to the exit. Payment is done automatically, then the door opens. That grab-and-go experience - no more hassle than taking food from your own fridge, says the Dutch chain - is made possible by cameras that can see where you are and which products you take. Sensors in the shelves feel if you take a product or put it back, and the combination of the two can register meticulously which products you really take home."

According to the story, "CEO Marit van Egmond says that in this quickly evolving technological world, retailers have unlimited opportunities to increase convenience for their customers." And, as it happens, it can create all sorts of conveniences for store operators as well.
KC's View:
I've actually been a little surprised that there haven't been more tests of checkout-free technology since Amazon Go debuted … I continue to believe that this kind of tech could end up being the most important retail development since scanning.

But maybe we're getting there. Though slowly.

I got an email yesterday informing me that Standard Cognition, which has been developing a competitive system (I visited and reported here on a test store it is running in San Francisco) is actually going to operate a checkout-free concession stand at Polar Stadium, home of Boston Red Sox tripe-A affiliate the Worcester Red Sox, beginning in …2021?

That's a long time to wait, but then again, Polar Park won't be open until then - it is just now being built for the team, which is relocating from its longtime home in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, a move that has created its own share of controversy among traditionalists and fans.